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Lok Shaba Polls: First phase of Lok Sabha elections show high voter turnout

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High voter turnout of over 60 percent has been reported, in initial reports, in the 102 Lok Sabha seats which went to polls in the first phase of the Lok Sabha elections today. Polling remained largely peaceful with voters from various walks participating enthusiastically despite heat wave in a dazzling display of civic responsibility and pride. Of the 102 Parliamentary constituencies, 11 Lok Sabha seats are reserved for ST and 18 seats are reserved for SC.

These constituencies are spread over 17 states and four Union Territories. These are from States including Uttar Pradesh, West Bengal, Bihar, Assam, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Rajasthan, Tamil Nadu, Uttarakhand, Arunachal Pradesh, Manipur and Meghalaya.

Three Lok Sabha seats of West Bengal recorded a high voter turnout of over 77.57 percent, eight seats of Uttar Pradesh saw a voter turnout of over 57.61 percent, four seats of Bihar recorded over 47.49 percent, Rajasthan recorded over 50.95 percent for eight Parliamentary constituencies, five seats of Maharashtra saw a voter turnout of over 55.29 percent, five seats of Assam recorded over 71.38 per cent and all 39 seats of Tamil Nadu recorded a voter turnout of over 62.19 percent in the first phase. All five seats in Uttarakhand recorded poll percentage of 53.64 percent, and one seat of Chhattisgarh recorded voter turnout of 63.41 percent.

A total of 1625 candidates were in the fray in this phase. Senior BJP leaders and Union Ministers Nitin Gadkari, Sarbananda Sonowal, Kiren Rijiju, Dr Jitendra Singh, Sanjeev Balyan and as well as BJP leaders Tamilisai Soundararajan and Jitin Prasada, and Congress leaders Gaurav Gogoi, Karti Chidambaram and Nakul Nath and DMK’s Dayanidhi Maran are prominent faces whose political fate were sealed in the EVMs today.

The Election Commission has thanked voters and entire election machinery. Fifty six villages in Chhattisgarh’s Bastar, and Shompen tribe of Great Nicobar voted for the first time. Shompen tribe are the indigenous people of the interior of Great Nicobar Island and are designated as a Particularly Vulnerable Tribal Group. A large number of first-time voters also participated enthusiastically.

Against the backdrop of a largely peaceful and conducive environment, the nation’s diverse electorate painted vivid pictures of democracy in action. From bustling city centres to remote villages, the polling stations witnessed a colourful convergence of voters spanning generations and backgrounds. Polling was seamless, based on meticulous planning and execution by the Commission and its officials in the field.

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